As restrictions disappear and more people return to their offices and work routines, fear appears. How can we use internal communications to convey confidence and reassurance?
Covid-19 has changed our lives in many ways: closed offices, remote work, new routines…
Now, as the post-pandemic “new normal” begins to loom and some industries resume business, many people feel an intense fear of returning to work, also known as “ergophobia”.
After days of confinement, they are returning to their jobs with a sensation of insecurity and fear of being infected. What can we do from internal communications to alleviate this discomfort?
#1. Communicate Safety
One of the most common worries is that the company won’t comply with the measures and protective elements. It is useful to ask ourselves – and answer – these questions suggested by Isabel Giménez, a Spanish journalist from the National Association of Health Informants and ComunicaBiotec, in an article for LinkedIn
• What is the company doing to ensure the health of the team?
• Who will work remotely and who will return to the offices and why?
• What security measures will be implemented for those who have to come to work? Will individual protection or disinfection materials be available? Where?
• Is there any special measure or protocol to deal with providers and subcontractors?
#2. Communicate objectives and convey order
Where is the company going? How is it going to act in the face of what is happening and what is the responsibility of each member of the staff? Those who work remotely should also know what their goals are.
You need to distribute tasks and communicate them clearly. “Anticipation adds up and conveys a sense of control that in these situations brings confidence,” Giménez emphasizes.
#3. Encourage one-on-one calls
Especially if the company has few employees, ask the leaders to take a few minutes to call each one. If the workforce is large, this task can be done by team or department coordinators.
#4. Keep the channels open
Employees must know who to consult or turn to if they have questions about the protocols or suggestions.
#5. Be transparent
The internal public should be the first to learn about the corporate plans and decisions, in order to put off rumors.
“Our behavior in critical situations portrays us and what we do can help strengthen the relationship with our collaborators or seriously deteriorate it,” warns Giménez.
As an agency specialized in internal and cross communications, we have developed a consulting and communication kit for the corporate “new normal.”